Skip to content | Accessibility Information

Dr David Haley BA Hons (Fine Art) MA PhD HonFCIWEM

Senior Research Fellow, Director - Ecology In Practice

Dr David Haley

Keywords which best describe my practice and research

Art, landscape, ecology, land management, water, futures, whole systems, well-being, embodied, global warming, climate change, extinction of species, sea level rise, restoration, population explosion, poetry, performance, installation, systems collapse, white-faced clown, resilience, sustainability, grace, question based learning, eco-centric culture, aesthetic diversity, communities of inquiry

Ecological artist, David Haley is a Senior Research Fellow in MIRIAD Arts Research Centre at Manchester Metropolitan University and the founding Director of Ecology In Practice research group. Haley is a Visiting Professor at Zhongyuan University of Technology and Vice-Chair of the Charter Institution for Water and Environmental Management's Art & Environment Network, and is a member of the Society for Ecological Restoration, the Landscape Research Group, eco-arts network, and He is also a trustee of Future's Venture and Director of Harrison Studio & Associates (Britain). In addition to ecological arts commissions, he contributes regularly to international journals, publications and conferences.


Ecology: the study of organisms in relation to one another and to their surroundings, derived from the Greek word, oikos, meaning house, or dwelling.

Art: 'rta', from an Indo-Aryan noun/adjective of the Rig Veda, meaning the dynamic process, by which the whole cosmos continues to be created - virtuously.

I perceive our ability to survive climate change as the enactment of an evolutionary narrative. My interdisciplinary research attempts to integrate quantitative and qualitative methodologies into the creative process. This informs my arts practice that generates poetic dialogues to resonate as creative interventions, in pursuit of aesthetic diversity to develop communities of inquiry for an eco-centric culture.


Visiting Professor, Zhongyuan University of Technology
Trustee, Future's Venture
Director, Harrison Studio & Associates (Britain)
Vice-Chair, Arts and the Environment Network, The Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management
Steering Group - Royal Liverpool Children’s NHS Trust, Alder Hey, Arts for Health
Member - The Society for Ecological Restoration



A Drop In The Ocean: A Trace Of Life

A research proposal in the form of an artwork (film and gallery installation) to eventually develop a live artwork that follows the course of a bacterium (named Ulysses Species Nova) from an English river as it completes a trans-Atlantic water/weather cycle - a 'homebecoming'. Water sampling to seek the route of this bacterium’s Odyssey, will question the relationship between climate change and evolution. Details…

A Walk on the Wild Side

Initiated in 2004 and in receipt of £1,000 ACENW ‘seed funding’, this project for URBIS (2007) will promote: a) ‘transformative reflective practice’ (Habermas) as an educational core skill, b) the development of biodiversity corridors and c) encourage community participation in spatial planning. The partners for this ecological arts programme include site-sight, GMPTE, the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology at Lancaster University, the Mersey Basin Trust and Landlife the National Wildflower Trust. Details…

Drawing on Life

The Drawing on Life research project is a synthesis of traditional life drawing, ecology and evolutionary theory. Available to all MIRIAD students, I piloted this project through November/ December 2004 and will deliver a further course as a postgraduate ‘option’ in 2006. Details…

Greenhouse Britain: Losing Ground, Gaining Wisdom

Harrison Studio & Associates (Britain). "As the waters rise gracefully, how may we withdraw gracefully"? Initially supported by DEFRA's Climate Challenge Fund and currently in negotiation with other funders and six venues for a simultaneous Mainland Britain launch in 2008. Details…

In the Memory of Water

In collaboration with CLEAR: Centre for Landscape & Environmental Arts Research, Cumbria Institute for the Arts and the INTERFACE research centre at the University of Ulster on a three-way research project to synthesises different approaches to art, research and the landscape. . Details…

River Dialogues: The Long Story

Working with Mid-Pennine Arts to develop a programme of ecological arts and research projects for the ‘Pennine Lancashire’ district,.. Details…

Rivers From The Future

Knowledge gathered in the form of an expanded pattern book/journal will consider North West England's most valuable resource (bar none), freshwater, and how it may contribute to the creation of a 'New Suburbia'. This project is MIRIAD’s contribution to Confluence: water as a determinant of culture, a research programme in collaboration with INTERFACE (University of Ulster) and CLEAR (Cumbria Institute for the Arts). Details…

Tides Turn, Waters Dance

Project being developed with artist, Wu Mali and the Bamboo Culture Project, Taipei. It considers how Taiwan, Hong Kong and mainland China may 'make time' as sea levels rise. Details…


David Haley is a member of:

A selection of recent research outputs.


Harrison-Mayer, H., Harrison, N., Haley, D. Harrison, G, 2009. Greenhouse Britain, Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, 31 Mercer Street, New York NY10013, 10 January – 7 February 2009.

Haley, D., 2007. Water Performed: Learning from Artists., Chinese Art Centre, Manchester.

Haley, D., 2005. Evolving the Future.

Haley, D., 2003. Ecoart = radical approaches to restoring the earth, ecoartspace gallery, Beacon, New York, Dec-03.

Haley, D., 2003. Psalm for the Severn, Ecoartspace Gallery, Beacon, New York.


Haley, D., 2003. River Life 3000: a dialogue for the beginning of time., Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery, UK, Jan-03.

Haley, D., 2003. River of Life 3000, Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery.

Haley, D., 2003. Trees on the Severn., Kyoto International Conference Centre, Japan., Mar-03.

Haley, D., 2002. 'Wish you were here'.

Haley, D. Kershaw,K. Scantlebury, I, 2002. Cobweb Laboratory and Confesions Visions, Victoria Baths, Gorton Monastery, Holden Gallery Manchester.

Haley, D., 2002. COMMON-WEALTH: aesthetic diversity as a driver of change, Manchester Metropolitan University.

Haley, D., 2001. CULTURE: the artists proof, Holden GAllery, MMU, Manchester, UK.


Haley, D., 2000. species nova [to look anew] part I: Seeking An Unacceptable Profile, Lancaster University..

Book Chapters

Haley, D., 2016. 'A question of values: art, ecology and the natural order of things'. In James Brady, Gaia Projects. (eds.) Elemental: an arts and ecology reader., 1, 41 - 61, Gaia Projects Press, Manchester, UK.

Haley, D., 2016. 'Weaving the filigree: Paradoxes, opposites and diversity for participatory emergent arts and design curricula.'. In Walter Leal (eds.) Handbook of Theory and Practice of Sustainable, Development in Higher Education, 1, TBA, Springer Press.

FIRBANK, L. HARRISON, H., HARRISON, N., HALEY, D. GRIFFITH, B., 2009. 'A Story Of Becoming: Landscape Creation Through An Art/Science Dynamic. Chapter in Land Use and Management: The New Debate. RELU'. In, Chapter in Land Use and Management: The New Debat.

Haley, D., 2008. 'Art in Ecology: Questions of Foresight.'. In Music and Art in Action (MAiA) Vol. 1 No. 1, Music and Art in Action (MAiA).

Haley, D., 2008. 'The Limits of Sustainability: The Art of Ecology'. In KAGAN, S. and KIRCHBERG, V (eds.) Sustainability: a new frontier for the arts and cultures, VAS-Verlag, Frankfurt, Germany.

Haley, D., 2008. 'Water, Time and Grace: Questions of Art and Ecology'. In Raney, K. (eds.) Questions of Art and Ecology, Cornerhouse Publications.

Haley, D., 2007. ', Is Well-Being Worth Dying For?'. In HAWORTH, J (eds.) Well-being: individual, community, and social perspectives. Palgrave Macmillan, Hampshire., Palgrave Macmillan, Hampshire.

Haley, D., 2007. 'Art, Health and Well-Being'. In HAWORTH, J (eds.) Well-being: individual, community, and social perspectives, Palgrave Macmillan, Hampshire. TBP.

Haley, D., 2005. 'Evolution and Water and Well-being'. In Lehr, J. H (eds.) Water Encyclopaedia: Oceanography; Meteorology; Physics and Chemistry; Water Law; and Water History, Art, and Culture, 715 to 718 and 791 to 793, Wiley, New York.

Haley, D., 2005. 'Evolution and Water and Well-being'. In Lehr, J. H. Water (eds.) Encyclopaedia: Oceanography; Meteorology; Physics and Chemistry; Water Law; and Water History, Art, and Culture, 715 to 718 791 to 793, Wiley, New York.

Haley, D., 2005. 'What a Performance! What a Performance?'. In Heim. W (eds.) What a Performance! What a Performance?, tbc.

Haley, D., 2002. 'River Life: a meandering intervention'. In KENLY, R. & REMESAR, A. (eds.) The Arts in Urban Development: Waterfronts of Art II,, 1, 87-102, CER POLIS, Public Art Observaory, University of Barcelona.

Haley, D., 2002. 'The Future and Other Creation Myths'. In SPAID, S. (eds.) Ecovention: current art to transorm ecologies, 1, Ecoartspace,, CAC Cincinnati.

Haley, D., 2002. 'The Future and Other Creations Myths'. In Sue Spaid (eds.) Ecovention: current art to transform ecologies, Section 11 Critical Diversity, 150, Contempory Art Centre, Cincinnati, greenmuseum and Artspace.

Internet Publications

Haley, D., 2001. 'Reflections on the Future – “O brave new world”: a change in the weather', Waterfronts of Art I, Art for Social Change,

Journal Articles

Haley, D., 2016. 'Seeking Eco Action: the Myth of Data Science and the Art of Resilience', Leonardo, Special Issue: Balance-Unbalance, TBA.

Haley, D., 2005. 'Observations, Reflections and Proposals for Creative Ecology Interventions', Observations, Reflections and Proposals for Creative Ecology Interventions.

Haley, D., 2003. 'Species nova (to look anew): art as ecology', Ethics & the Enviroment A Special Issue on Art, Volume 8, Number 1, 143-153.


Haley, D., 2003. 'Species Nova [to look anew]: Art as Ecology', Ethics & the Environment A Special Issue on Art, Volume 8, Number1 Spring 2003, 143-153.

Haley, D., 2001. '"Exactitude winged by intuition"', European Journal of Arts Education (EJAE), Volume 3, Issue 2, 43-57.


Haley, D., 2016. 'Future’s Venture Foundation: making the space for art to move onwards', 9th Midterm Conference of the RN-Sociology of the Arts, 2016,, University of Porto, 8-10 September 2016, in TBA.

Haley, D., 2008. 'A Dialogue with Oysters: The Art of Facilitation', A Dialogue with Oysters: The Art of Facilitation, The Tropic of Cancer Project, Budhi, Taiwan.

Haley, D., 2008. 'Art and Ecology', Art and Ecology, Department of Atmospheric Studies, Central University.

Haley, D., 2008. 'The Art of Becoming: Questions of Climate Change', Dialogue on Art, Culture and Climate Change, Central Academy of Fine Art, Beijing.

Haley, D., 2007. 'Creative Responses to the Future', Guest Lecture to open British Council exhibition, North SouthEastWest, University of Stuttgart, Germany..

Haley, D., 2007. 'Given that we live in a world of', Invited lecture to A Public of Sorts conference, UHC Arts Collective, Urbis, Manchester..

Haley, D., 2006. 'An Overview of Projects by David Haley', Creative Interventions in Ecological Art, Graduate Institute of Interdisciplinary Art, National Kaoshiung Normal University, Taiwan.

Haley, D., 2006. 'Creative Interventions in Ecological Art: An Overview of Projects by David Haley', Graduate Institute of Interdisciplinary Art, National Kaoshiung Normal University, Taiwan.

Haley, D., 2006. 'New Suburbia. Keynote paper for One Step Beyond conference', New Suburbia. Keynote paper for One Step Beyond conference, Eden Project, UK..

Haley, D., 2006. 'Rivers from the Future: An Ecological Arts Proposal', International Symposium on Sustainability and Contemporary Art,, University of Central Europe, Budapst, Hungary..

Haley, D., 2006. 'Rivers from the Future: An Ecological Arts Proposal', International Symposium on Sustainability and Contemporary Art, University of Central Europe, Budapest, Hungary..

Haley, D., 2005. 'Ecological Art', Public Art & Urban Design PhD Programme, University of Barcelona.

Haley, D., 2005. 'Suburbia, The Final Frontier:', Art and Ecology, Desire and Sustainability., Public Art & Urban Design Observatory, CER POLIS, University of Barcelona, Spain..

Haley, D., 2003. 'for Artist Working With Water,', 3rd World Water Forum, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London, UK, in Crossover UK and Co-curator of eco-art seminar.

Haley, D., 2003. 'In the flow of time', 3rd World Water Forum – Arts Festival, Honen-in Temple, Kyoto, Japan.

Haley, D., 2003. 'In the flow of time', 3rd World Water Forum – Arts, Honen-in Temple, Kyoto, Japan.

Haley, D., 2003. 'Park Life: a plea for participation', Public Parks Keep Out national conference for The Sensory Trust and Green Spaces, Manchester Town Hall, UK.

Haley, D., 2003. 'Reflections on water', 3rd World Water Forum, Stakeholder Centre, Kyoto, Japan.

Haley, D., 2003. 'Towards a Kyoto Proposal', Social Sculpture – connective aesthetics, international colloquium, Oxford Brookes University, UK.

Haley, D., 2002. 'Models of uncertainty: sustainable development and art', International Women’s Artists: Towards a Sustainable Environment, Medical Education Centre, Northern General Hospital, Sheffield UK.

Other Outputs

Haley, D., 2009. 'Membership of research groups', A&E [art&ecology] Research Group (Director), SEA [Social & Environmental Research Centre].

Haley, D., 2008. 'A Dialogue With Oysters,', Magazine.

Haley, D., 2002. 'Artswork: An Arts in Healthcare Study for Royal Liverpool Children’s Hospital NHS Trust, Alder Hey'.

Haley, D. & Harrison, M., 2002. 'COMMON-WEALTH: aesthetic diversity as a driver of change', Workshop design, direction and paper to Public Art Observatory International Workshop - SEA (formely SEPRU)/MIRIAD..